DC Extended Universe
Created byDC Films
Original workMan of Steel (2013)
OwnerWarner Bros. Pictures
Years2013–present[a]
Miscellaneous
Based onCharacters
by DC Comics

The DC Extended Universe (DCEU) is an American media franchise and shared universe centered on a series of superhero films and television series produced by DC Films and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on characters that appear in American comic books published by DC Comics. The DCEU also includes comic books, short films, novels, and video games. Much like the original DC Universe in comic books, the DCEU was established by crossing over common plot elements, settings, cast, and characters.

Warner Bros. had plans to bring various DC Comics superheroes together in films since 2002, when Wolfgang Petersen was set to direct a crossover of the Batman and Superman film franchises. After a planned Justice League film was put on hold in 2008 and initial universe plans were scrapped due to the critical and commercial disappointment of the 2011 film Green Lantern, Warner Bros. established this shared universe in 2013.

The DCEU began with the film Man of Steel (2013), a reboot of the Superman film series, followed by Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), which served as a reboot of the Batman film series. These films were followed by Suicide Squad (2016), Wonder Woman (2017), Justice League (2017; a director's cut of the film, Zack Snyder's Justice League, was released in 2021), Aquaman (2018), Shazam! (2019), Birds of Prey (2020), Wonder Woman 1984 (2020), and The Suicide Squad (2021). Future films include Black Adam in 2022 and Shazam! Fury of the Gods, The Flash, Blue Beetle and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom in 2023. The DCEU was expanded to include television series for the streaming service HBO Max in 2022, beginning with Peacemaker. The Flash will retroactively incorporate Tim Burton's films Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992) into the DCEU's continuity via the plot elements of time travel and the multiverse, with Michael Keaton reprising his role as his version of the title character.

The DCEU is the twelfth-highest-grossing film franchise of all time, having grossed over $5.8 billion at the global box office. Its highest-grossing film, Aquaman, earned over $1.15 billion worldwide and became the highest-grossing DC Comics-based film to date. Films of the franchise have generally received mixed-to-positive reviews from critics.

Etymology

Upon announcement of the film series, the universe was commonly called the "DC Cinematic Universe" by fans and the media, in keeping with the naming convention of the already established Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).[1][2][3] Keith Staskiewicz, writing for Entertainment Weekly, jokingly coined the term "DC Extended Universe™" in an article about Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice on July 1, 2015.[4][5] This term and the abbreviation DCEU quickly spread among the press and fans thinking of it as the official name of the franchise over the following years.[6][7] According to Vulture writer Abraham Riesman, DC confirmed to him in September 2017 that the term was not used internally and they did not consider it official.[5]

In 2016, as part of DC Films Presents: Dawn of the Justice League, both Geoff Johns and Kevin Smith referred to the franchise's name as being the "Justice League Universe".[8] During the DC Films panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2018, a video banner displayed the words "Welcome to the Worlds of DC", after showcasing some upcoming films. As a result, some media outlets interpreted this as DC officially naming their shared film universe as the "Worlds of DC".[9][10] However, in March 2020, Jim Lee referred to the franchise as the DC Extended Universe at C2E2.[11] The franchise was officially titled DC Extended Universe when the WarnerMedia streaming service HBO Max launched the following May.[12]

Development

Film

In 2002, Wolfgang Petersen was set to direct a Batman vs. Superman film from a script by Akiva Goldsman.[13] Warner Bros. canceled development to focus on individual Superman and Batman projects after J. J. Abrams submitted another draft for Superman: Flyby.[14][15] In February 2007, Warner Bros. hired husband and wife duo Michele and Kieran Mulroney to write a script for a Justice League film.[16] Christian Bale, who starred as Batman in Batman Begins (2005), was not approached to reprise the role,[17] nor was Brandon Routh, who starred as Superman in Superman Returns (2006).[18] George Miller was hired to direct the film,[19] reportedly titled Justice League Mortal,[20] with Armie Hammer cast as Batman, D. J. Cotrona as Superman, Adam Brody as Flash, Santiago Cabrera as Aquaman, Common as Green Lantern, Megan Gale as Wonder Woman, Hugh Keays-Byrne as Martian Manhunter and Jay Baruchel as Maxwell Lord.[21] The project was put on indefinite hold in January 2008, after failing to secure tax breaks for filming in Australia, as well as the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike preventing progress on the script.[22]

In 2013, a reboot of the Superman franchise, Man of Steel, was set to lay the groundwork for future DC films.[23] The film contained references to other characters in the DC Universe, so if it were a success, it could launch a shared universe.[24][25] At San Diego Comic-Con in July, one month after Man of Steel's release, Warner Bros. announced that Superman and Batman would meet for the first time in a cinematic format in a sequel to Man of Steel, establishing the shared universe.[26][27] A slate of ten DC films was announced in 2014, with initial plans of those universe-driven films spanning through 2020.[28] Warner Bros. president of creative development Greg Silverman explained DC's approach to their cinematic universe in 2015: "We ... take these beloved characters and put them in the hands of master filmmakers and make sure they all coordinate with each other".[29]

Geoff Johns has served in various positions in the DC Films production studio, and for the DCEU.
Geoff Johns has served in various positions in the DC Films production studio, and for the DCEU.

In May 2016, following criticism of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Warner Bros. established a DC Films division with DC's chief creative officer Geoff Johns and Warner Bros. executive vice president Jon Berg as its heads to oversee production and form a cohesive creative direction for the franchise.[30][31] DC Films would not be fully autonomous, as Johns reported to DC president Diane Nelson and Berg reported to Silverman.[30] Charles Roven was also moved from his day-by-day producer role on future DC films, which he had served since 2005's Batman Begins, to an administrative executive producer role.[32] In December, Silverman was ousted from his role in Warner Bros., and Toby Emmerich was promoted to president and chief content officer in his place.[33] By January 2017, Johns and Berg reported to Emmerich.[34] Following the financial and critical success of Wonder Woman in June, Johns stated that moving forward the films would focus on the heart, humor, hope, heroics, and optimism of the characters.[35] As a result of Justice League's underperformance at the box office, Berg left his position by January 2018 and became a production partner with Roy Lee.[36][37] DC also sought to deemphasize the shared nature of their films, with Diane Nelson stating: "Our intention, certainly, moving forward is using the continuity to help make sure nothing is diverging in a way that doesn't make sense, but there's no insistence upon an overall storyline or interconnectivity in that universe... Moving forward, you'll see the DC movie universe being a universe, but one that comes from the heart of the filmmaker who's creating them".[38]

In January 2018, Walter Hamada was appointed the President of DC Films and co-runner of the DCEU, replacing Berg.[37] The following month, Chantal Nong was named Vice President of DC Films.[39] The pair were hired to oversee the franchise with Johns, as the key production team managers.[37] However, Johns stepped down from his executive roles at DC that June, and created a production company, Mad Ghost Productions, to have a greater hands-on role in various DC media as a writer and producer.[40] After the financial success of Aquaman, Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara said the upcoming slate of DC films would be focused on individual character stories instead of interconnectivity.[41] In 2021, WarnerMedia reversed course and announced that future films would again be interconnected.[42][43]

In April 2022, following the merger of Discovery Inc. with WarnerMedia, Warner Bros. Discovery announced to overhaul the functions of DC Entertainment and DC Films productions. President and CEO of the newly merged company, David Zaslav, and its executives believe that DC "lacks coherent creative and brand strategy" and is looking to hire a czar of creativity and strategy, comparable to Marvel Studios' Kevin Feige. Discovery intends to revitalize certain top-tier DC characters that they believe had been neglected in previous years, such as Superman. Walter Hamada is believed to be included in Zaslav's business plan, pending a renegotiation deal at the end of his contractual obligations to DC Films in 2023.[44] The following month, the future of DC Films was revealed to prioritize theatrical films over streaming releases, as a part of plans overseen by Zaslav.[45] In June, executive restructuring of the studios began with Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy being named as the co-chairmen of Warner Bros. Motion Picture Group, taking over from Toby Emmerich who will step down from his position. The pair were also announced to temporarily oversee DC Films and Warner Animation Group output until he does so, with Hamada reporting directly to them.[46] In August, at the second quarter earnings call presentation, Zaslav confirmed the studio's overall 10-year plan to focus on theatrical films. The CEO stated: "We’re not going to launch a movie until it’s ready. ...We’re not going to launch a movie to make a quarter and we’re not going to put a movie out unless we believe in it". He additionally confirmed plans for Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman to be the primary focus of the franchise.[47]

Television

In May 2020, WarnerMedia launched the streaming service HBO Max. In September, HBO Max ordered Peacemaker, the DCEU's first television series and a spin-off of the film The Suicide Squad.[48] After this announcement, Walter Hamada stated that DC Films was interested in producing spin-off series for every film in the DCEU slate for HBO Max.[49] In February 2021, HBO Max and executive producer J. J. Abrams began developing multiple series based on the individual team members of the Justice League Dark, with a plan to eventually culminate these projects in a crossover and team-up miniseries.[50]

Feature films

It has been suggested that this article should be split into a new article titled List of DC Extended Universe films. (discuss) (August 2022)

Released

Film U.S. release date Director Screenwriter(s) Story by Producer(s) Notes
Man of Steel June 14, 2013 (2013-06-14) Zack Snyder David S. Goyer David S. Goyer & Christopher Nolan Charles Roven, Christopher Nolan, Emma Thomas and Deborah Snyder
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice March 25, 2016 (2016-03-25) Chris Terrio and David S. Goyer Charles Roven and Deborah Snyder
Suicide Squad August 5, 2016 (2016-08-05) David Ayer Charles Roven and Richard Suckle
Wonder Woman June 2, 2017 (2017-06-02) Patty Jenkins Allan Heinberg Zack Snyder & Allan Heinberg
and Jason Fuchs
Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder, Zack Snyder and Richard Suckle
Justice League November 17, 2017 (2017-11-17) Zack Snyder Chris Terrio and Joss Whedon Chris Terrio & Zack Snyder Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder, Jon Berg and Geoff Johns [b]
Aquaman December 21, 2018 (2018-12-21) James Wan David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick
and Will Beall
Geoff Johns & James Wan
and Will Beall
Peter Safran and Rob Cowan
Shazam! April 5, 2019 (2019-04-05) David F. Sandberg Henry Gayden Henry Gayden and Darren Lemke Peter Safran
Birds of Prey February 7, 2020 (2020-02-07) Cathy Yan Christina Hodson Margot Robbie, Bryan Unkeless and Sue Kroll
Wonder Woman 1984 December 25, 2020 (2020-12-25) Patty Jenkins Patty Jenkins & Geoff Johns
& Dave Callaham
Patty Jenkins & Geoff Johns Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder, Zack Snyder, Patty Jenkins, Gal Gadot and Stephen Jones [c]
Zack Snyder's Justice League March 18, 2021 (2021-03-18) Zack Snyder Chris Terrio Chris Terrio & Zack Snyder
and Will Beall
Charles Roven and Deborah Snyder [d][e]
The Suicide Squad August 5, 2021 (2021-08-05) James Gunn Charles Roven and Peter Safran [c]

Man of Steel (2013)

Main article: Man of Steel (film)

Zack Snyder, the director of Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and co-story writer/director of Justice League
Zack Snyder, the director of Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and co-story writer/director of Justice League

Kal-El / Clark Kent, who arrived on Earth years ago as an infant from Krypton, struggles with why he was sent to Earth. Raised by his adoptive parents, Jonathan and Martha Kent, Clark adopts the persona "Superman", and learns if his abilities are meant to maintain peace or conquer the world.[55]

During story discussions for The Dark Knight Rises (2012), David S. Goyer told Christopher Nolan his idea regarding how to present Superman in a modern context.[56] Impressed with Goyer's concept, Nolan pitched the idea to the studio,[57] who hired Nolan to produce and Goyer to write based on the financial and critical success of The Dark Knight (2008).[58][59] In October 2010, Zack Snyder was hired to direct the film,[60] and Henry Cavill was cast as Clark Kent / Superman in January 2011.[61] Other cast members included Amy Adams as Lois Lane,[62] Michael Shannon as the villain General Zod,[63] Diane Lane as Martha Kent,[64] Kevin Costner as Jonathan Kent,[65] Russell Crowe as Jor-El,[66] and Laurence Fishburne as Perry White.[67] Principal photography began in August 2011.[68] Man of Steel was released in North America on June 14, 2013.[69]

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)

Main article: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

Gotham City-based vigilante Batman travels to Metropolis to preemptively combat Superman, fearing what would happen if the latter is kept unchecked, while another threat endangers humankind.[70]

By June 2013, Warner Bros. were fast-tracking a sequel to Man of Steel, with Snyder and Goyer returning as director and writer, respectively.[71] Nolan was involved in an advisory role as executive producer.[72] The sequel included Batman in a main role, and serves as a reboot of the Batman film series.[26][27] Cavill, Adams, Lane, and Fishburne reprised their roles.[73] Ben Affleck was cast as Bruce Wayne / Batman,[74] followed by Gal Gadot as Diana Prince / Wonder Woman, marking the character's first appearance in a live-action theatrical film.[75] Chris Terrio was hired to rewrite Goyer's script.[76] Originally scheduled to be released in July 2015, the release date was changed to May 6, 2016, to give the filmmakers "time to realize fully their vision, given the complex visual nature of the story".[77] Other cast members Jesse Eisenberg and Jeremy Irons joined the cast as Lex Luthor and Alfred Pennyworth, respectively.[78] The film's title was revealed to be Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.[79] Initial filming occurred on October 19, 2013, at East Los Angeles College,[80] before full principal photography began in May 2014 and concluded that December.[81][82] Production took place in Detroit, Illinois, New Mexico, Africa and the South Pacific.[81][83] After another date change, the film was released in North America on March 25, 2016.[84]

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is set 18 months after the events of Man of Steel.[85] The film introduced Ezra Miller as Barry Allen / The Flash,[86] Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry / Aquaman,[73] Ray Fisher as Victor Stone / Cyborg,[87] and Joe Morton as Dr. Silas Stone.[88] Steppenwolf is also introduced, who served as the main antagonist in Justice League, through a brief scene. The scene was not included in the film's theatrical release, but instead was revealed online by Warner Bros. on March 28,[89] before being included in the Ultimate Edition home video release.[90]

Suicide Squad (2016)

Main article: Suicide Squad (film)

David Ayer, the writer/director of Suicide Squad
David Ayer, the writer/director of Suicide Squad

After the death of Superman, a secret government agency recruits imprisoned supervillains to execute dangerous black ops missions and rescue the world from a powerful threat, in exchange for clemency.[91]

In February 2009, prior to the development of the DCEU, Warner Bros. was developing a Suicide Squad film, with Dan Lin producing and Justin Marks writing the script.[92] Warner Bros. announced Suicide Squad in October 2014, with David Ayer as director,[28] also serving as screenwriter.[93] The main cast included Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Jared Leto as the Joker, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang, Jay Hernandez as El Diablo, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc, Karen Fukuhara as Katana, Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, and Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flag.[94] Tom Hardy was originally cast as Rick Flag, but dropped out due to scheduling issues with his film The Revenant (2015).[95] Principal photography took place from April to August 2015 in Toronto.[96][97][98] Suicide Squad was released in North America on August 5, 2016.[99]

Suicide Squad is set after the events of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.[100] Affleck as Bruce Wayne / Batman and Miller as Barry Allen / The Flash made appearances in the film.[100] In a mid-credits scene, Waller meets Wayne in a restaurant and hands him a dossier containing information on future members of the Justice League.[101]

Wonder Woman (2017)

Main article: Wonder Woman (2017 film)

Patty Jenkins, the director of Wonder Woman and co-writer/director of Wonder Woman 1984
Patty Jenkins, the director of Wonder Woman and co-writer/director of Wonder Woman 1984

Diana of Themyscira, an Amazon warrior who also is the demigoddess daughter of the god Zeus, uses her talents and abilities in order to help humanity during World War I.

In December 2013, Gal Gadot was cast as Diana Prince / Wonder Woman and signed a three-picture deal which included a solo film.[75][102] The film was announced in October 2014,[28] and Michelle MacLaren was confirmed to direct from a screenplay by Jason Fuchs the next month.[103][104] MacLaren left the project the following year in April due to creative differences,[105] and Patty Jenkins was hired to replace her.[106] Chris Pine was cast as Steve Trevor.[107] Other cast members include Connie Nielsen as Queen Hippolyta, Robin Wright as General Antiope, Danny Huston as Erich Ludendorff, Elena Anaya as Doctor Poison, and David Thewlis as Ares.[108][109] Filming occurred from November 2015 to May 2016 and took place in the United Kingdom, France and Italy.[110][111] Wonder Woman was released in North America on June 2, 2017.[99]

Justice League (2017)

Main article: Justice League (film)

Motivated by Superman's death at the hands of Doomsday, Batman and Wonder Woman assemble a team of metahumans to stop the threat of Steppenwolf, who is in search of three Mother Boxes scattered across Earth.[112]

By June 2013, Goyer was set to write Justice League as part of a three-film deal he signed for Man of Steel.[71] Snyder was confirmed to return as director in April 2014,[113] and the film was announced in October as Justice League Part One.[28] In 2016, Chris Terrio was revealed to have written the script,[114] and the title was changed to simply Justice League by June.[115] Affleck, Cavill, Gadot, Momoa, Miller, Fisher, Irons, Lane, Adams, Eisenberg, Nielsen, Wright, and Morton reprised their respective roles from previous films.[116][117][118] Ciarán Hinds provides the voice and performance capture for Steppenwolf.[119] Filming took place from April to October 2016 at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden in England, as well as locations around London and in Iceland.[120][121] In May 2017, Snyder stepped down from his duties on the film due to his daughter's death; Joss Whedon filled his position on post-production, with additional scenes being written and directed by him.[122] Though Whedon was not officially credited for his role as post-production director, he completed enough additional work for a screenwriting credit on the film.[123] Justice League was released worldwide on November 17, 2017.[120]

Justice League introduced various characters, including J. K. Simmons as James Gordon,[124] Amber Heard as Mera,[125] and Billy Crudup as Henry Allen.[126] Additionally, Joe Manganiello as Slade Wilson / Deathstroke was introduced in a post-credits scene, teasing an alliance between him and Lex Luthor.[127]

Zack Snyder's Justice League (2021)

Main article: Zack Snyder's Justice League

The divisive reaction to the theatrical cut of Justice League, with Zack Snyder leaving directorial duties and the final cut of the film in the hands of Joss Whedon, led to a fan-driven campaign for a "Snyder Cut" of the film. Arguments were made that Snyder's vision would be more cohesive to the previous films.[128] In March 2019, Snyder confirmed his original cut does exist, and stated that it was up to Warner Bros. to release it.[129] Warner Bros. remained silent regarding the matter, though Variety reported in November that Warner Bros. was unlikely to release Snyder's version of Justice League, with one studio insider describing it as "a pipe dream".[130]

Snyder announced in May 2020 that HBO Max would be releasing his cut of Justice League on their service on March 18, 2021.[131] Initially conceived as a four-part miniseries, it was ultimately released as a four-hour film,[132] twice the length of the theatrical version.[133] Snyder stated this version is intended to not affect the future of the DCEU continuity, but that it takes place in a slightly alternate universe.[134] The new cut cost an estimated $70 million to complete, primarily for visual effects and additional photography.[135] Affleck, Miller, Fisher, Heard, Manganiello, and Lane returned to their roles for the additional photography,[136][137] while Jared Leto as the Joker and Harry Lennix as General Swanwick / Martian Manhunter were added to the film.[138][139] Work on the cut was completed in January 2021.[140] Characters in the film who had their scenes cut from the theatrical version include Darkseid (portrayed by Ray Porter),[141] DeSaad (portrayed by Peter Guinness),[142] Nuidis Vulko (portrayed by Willem Dafoe),[143] Iris West (portrayed by Kiersey Clemons),[144] Ryan Choi (portrayed by Zheng Kai),[145] several Green Lanterns, as well as Granny Goodness.[146]

Aquaman (2018)

Main article: Aquaman (film)

James Wan, the co-story writer/director of Aquaman and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom
James Wan, the co-story writer/director of Aquaman and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

Arthur Curry, a half-Atlantean assistant lighthouse keeper, sets out to lead the underwater kingdom of Atlantis against his half-brother, King Orm, who seeks to unite the seven underwater kingdoms against the surface world.

Jason Momoa was cast as Arthur Curry / Aquaman in June 2014.[73] By August, Will Beall and Kurt Johnstad were writing competing scripts for the character's solo film.[147] Aquaman was announced in October.[28] James Wan was hired as director the following year, as well as to oversee the screenplay by Johnstad.[148] David Leslie Johnson was later brought to write a new script.[149] Beall returned to write the script, based on a story treatment by Wan and Geoff Johns.[150] Johnson worked on a rewrite of Beall's script with Wan and producer Peter Safran.[151] Patrick Wilson was cast as Orm / Ocean Master, the half-brother of Aquaman and the main antagonist of the film.[152][153] Yahya Abdul-Mateen II was cast in the role of villain Black Manta.[154] Heard reprised her role as Mera from Justice League.[155] Other cast members include Willem Dafoe as Nuidis Vulko,[156] Temuera Morrison as Aquaman's father Tom Curry,[155] Nicole Kidman as Aquaman's mother Queen Atlanna,[157] and Dolph Lundgren as King Nereus.[158] Principal photography began in May 2017 in Queensland, Australia and wrapped that October.[155][159] Aquaman was released in North America on December 21, 2018.[160]

Aquaman is set after the events of Justice League, though critics have noticed numerous inconsistencies between the two theatrically released films.[161] Furthermore, Momoa claimed that the film takes place after "Zack's cut", with the ending of that version of the film directly tying into the events of Aquaman.[162]

Shazam! (2019)

Main article: Shazam! (film)

David F. Sandberg, the director of Shazam! and Shazam! Fury of the Gods
David F. Sandberg, the director of Shazam! and Shazam! Fury of the Gods

By speaking "Shazam", Billy Batson, a 14-year-old foster child, can turn into an adult superhero, courtesy of an ancient wizard. He attempts to master his powers and defeat the evil forces controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana.[163]

In August 2014, Dwayne Johnson announced his attachment to a project about the superhero Shazam, formerly known as Captain Marvel.[164] Johnson was revealed to be portraying the antihero Black Adam, Shazam's nemesis in the film, with Darren Lemke set to write the script in September.[165] In October, Warner Bros. announced Shazam as a film in its upcoming slate.[28] By January 2017, Henry Gayden was working on the script.[166] In July, David F. Sandberg was hired to direct Shazam!.[167] Johnson was dropped from the project, instead starring in a Black Adam solo film.[168] By October, Zachary Levi was cast as Shazam,[169] and in November, Asher Angel was cast as Shazam's child-age alter ego, Billy Batson.[170] The film's primary villain is Doctor Sivana, with Mark Strong in the role.[171][172] Other cast members include Jack Dylan Grazer, Grace Fulton, Jovan Armand, Ian Chen, and Faithe Herman as Batson's foster siblings,[173][174][175][176] Cooper Andrews and Marta Milans as Batson's foster parents,[177][178] and Djimon Hounsou as the wizard Shazam, who gives Batson his powers.[179] Principal photography began in January 2018 and wrapped that May,[180][181][182] with most of the filming taking place at Pinewood Toronto Studios, among other locations around Toronto.[183] Shazam! was released in North America on April 5, 2019.[184]

Shazam! is set after the events of Justice League.[185] Superman makes a cameo appearance at the end of the film, but his face is not shown as Henry Cavill was unable to reprise the role due to scheduling conflicts.[186] The villain Mister Mind is introduced in a mid-credits scene.[187]

Birds of Prey (2020)

Main article: Birds of Prey (2020 film)

Cathy Yan, the director of Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)
Cathy Yan, the director of Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

Since the events of Suicide Squad, Harley Quinn has left the Joker.[188] When Cassandra Cain, a young girl, comes across a diamond belonging to crime lord Black Mask, Harley joins forces with Black Canary, Huntress, and Renee Montoya to help protect her.[189][190]

By November 2016, a film based on the female superhero team Birds of Prey was in development, with Christina Hodson signed on as screenwriter.[191] By April 2018, Warner Bros. selected Cathy Yan as director, with Margot Robbie, Sue Kroll, and Bryan Unkless serving as producers. Robbie reprised her role as Harley Quinn from Suicide Squad.[192] The film is the first theatrical R-rated installment in the franchise and has a smaller budget than most of the other films.[193] In addition to Robbie's starring role, the team roster also includes Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Rosie Perez, and Ella Jay Basco as Huntress, Black Canary, Renee Montoya, and Cassandra Cain, respectively.[194][195][196] Black Mask serves as the film's primary antagonist with Ewan McGregor portraying the character, and Chris Messina portraying Victor Zsasz.[197][198][199] The full title of the film was revealed as Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) by Robbie.[200] Principal photography commenced in January 2019 in Los Angeles and lasted until April.[201][202][203] Birds of Prey held its world premiere in London on January 29, 2020, and was released in North America on February 7.[204]

Wonder Woman 1984 (2020)

Main article: Wonder Woman 1984

Diana Prince comes into conflict with the Soviet Union during the Cold War in the 1980s and finds two formidable foes in the form of the Cheetah and Maxwell Lord.[205]

By June 2017, Geoff Johns and Patty Jenkins had begun work on the story treatment for a Wonder Woman sequel.[206] In July, Johns was working on the script,[207] and the sequel was officially announced at San Diego Comic-Con, with Gadot reprising the lead role.[208] In September, Jenkins signed a deal to return as director,[209] and brought on David Callaham to pen the script with her and Johns.[210] Kristen Wiig was cast to portray the film's primary antagonist, Barbara Ann Minerva / Cheetah,[211][212] and Pedro Pascal was cast as Maxwell Lord.[213][214] Production began in June 2018 and concluded that December.[215] Filming locations included the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia, Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden in the United Kingdom and the islands of Tenerife and Fuerteventura in Spain.[216][217][218][219] Wonder Woman 1984 was released in the United States on HBO Max and in theaters simultaneously on December 25, 2020, after its release was delayed twice from an original June 5 date due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[220]

The Dreamstone - a gem associated with the characters Doctor Destiny and Dream of the Endless in the comics - plays a significant role in the film.[221][222] In a mid-credits scene, Lynda Carter, who starred as Wonder Woman in the character's 1970s television series, was introduced as Asteria, a legendary Amazon warrior who possessed ancient golden armor that Gadot's Wonder Woman wore in the film.[223]

The Suicide Squad (2021)

Main article: The Suicide Squad (film)

James Gunn, the writer/director of The Suicide Squad and writer/creator/showrunner of Peacemaker
James Gunn, the writer/director of The Suicide Squad and writer/creator/showrunner of Peacemaker

Waller sends a new Task Force X, consisting of both old and new members, on a mission to destroy a Nazi-era laboratory containing experiments.

In March 2016, a Suicide Squad sequel was announced to be in development, with Ayer returning as director.[224] Adam Cozad was hired to write the script by March 2017.[225] By July, a new story treatment was written by Zak Penn.[226] In September, Gavin O'Connor was hired as director and writer after Ayer dropped out.[227][228] O'Connor completed the script with David Bar Katz and Todd Stashwick by September 2018.[229][230] The next month, O'Connor left the project as Warner Bros. believed the script was too similar to Birds of Prey.[231] In 2019, the film was re-titled The Suicide Squad, with James Gunn directing, from a new script he wrote.[232] Gunn chose the project over various other films Warner Bros. had in development, including a Superman film.[233] In March, Idris Elba joined the cast. He was initially hired to replace Smith as Deadshot, who dropped out due to scheduling conflicts, but was later decided that Elba would play a new character so Smith could return in the future.[234][235]

Margot Robbie, Joel Kinnaman, Jai Courtney, and Viola Davis reprised their roles from the first film, while David Dastmalchian, Steve Agee, Michael Rooker, Peter Capaldi, Taika Waititi, Alice Braga, Sean Gunn, Daniela Melchior, Juan Diego Botto, Storm Reid, Pete Davidson, Nathan Fillion, Sylvester Stallone, Flula Borg, John Cena, and Joaquín Cosío, among others, joined the cast.[236][237] Production began in September 2019 at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Atlanta, with additional filming following in Panama, and concluded in February 2020.[238][239][240][241] The Suicide Squad began its international release on July 30, 2021, in the United Kingdom, and was released theatrically and on the streaming platform HBO Max in the United States on August 5.[242]

Upcoming films

Film U.S. release date Director(s) Screenwriter(s) Story by Producer(s) Status
Black Adam October 21, 2022 (2022-10-21)[243] Jaume Collet-Serra[244] Adam Sztykiel and
Rory Haines & Sohrab Noshirvani[245]
Beau Flynn, Dwayne Johnson, Hiram Garcia and Dany Garcia[244] Post-production
Shazam! Fury of the Gods March 17, 2023 (2023-03-17)[246] David F. Sandberg[247] Henry Gayden and Chris Morgan[248] Peter Safran[249]
The Flash June 23, 2023 (2023-06-23)[243] Andy Muschietti[250] Christina Hodson[251] John Francis Daley & Jonathan Goldstein
and Joby Harold[251][f]
Barbara Muschietti and Michael Disco[252]
Blue Beetle August 18, 2023 (2023-08-18)[253] Angel Manuel Soto[254] Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer[255] John Rickard[256]
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom December 25, 2023 (2023-12-25)[246] James Wan[257] David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick[258] James Wan & David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick
and Jason Momoa & Thomas Pa'a Sibbett[258]
James Wan and Peter Safran[259]

Black Adam (2022)

Main article: Black Adam (film)

Jaume Collet-Serra, the director of Black Adam
Jaume Collet-Serra, the director of Black Adam

Nearly 5,000 years after he was bestowed with the powers of the Egyptian gods and imprisoned, Black Adam is freed from his tomb, ready to unleash his unique form of justice on the modern world.[260]

In September 2014, after being considered to play Shazam and Lobo, Dwayne Johnson was cast as Black Adam, a central villain of DC's Shazam franchise.[165][261] The character was intended to be introduced in Shazam!, but the film's production studios chose to divide the narrative to focus on Black Adam's origin.[166] Black Adam and Shazam would instead cross paths in a future film.[262] Adam Sztykiel was hired as screenwriter.[263] Jaume Collet-Serra was hired as director in June 2019, with Johnson, Beau Flynn, Hiram Garcia and Dany Garcia attached as producers.[244][264] By September 2020, Rory Haines and Sohrab Noshirvani had written a new draft of the script.[265] The Justice Society of America will appear in the film, with Aldis Hodge cast as Hawkman,[266] Noah Centineo as Atom Smasher,[267] Quintessa Swindell as Cyclone,[268] and Pierce Brosnan as Doctor Fate.[269] Other cast members include Sarah Shahi as Adrianna Tomaz,[270] and Marwan Kenzari in an undisclosed role.[271] Filming began in April 2021 and wrapped that July.[272][273] Black Adam is scheduled to be released on October 21, 2022.[274]

Viola Davis will reprise her role as Amanda Waller from the Suicide Squad films and the television series Peacemaker.[275]

Shazam! Fury of the Gods (2023)

Main article: Shazam! Fury of the Gods

A sequel to Shazam! entered development in April 2019, with Henry Gayden returning as writer.[247] David F. Sandberg and Peter Safran were later confirmed to return as director and producer, respectively, and Chris Morgan was hired as an additional screenwriter.[276][277] Zachary Levi will reprise his role as the titular superhero, as will most of the adult and child cast in the Shazam Family.[278][279] At DC FanDome in August 2020, the film's title was announced as Shazam! Fury of the Gods.[280] Between February and April 2021, Rachel Zegler was cast in an undisclosed key role,[249] Helen Mirren was cast as the villain Hespera,[281] and Lucy Liu joined the cast as Kalypso.[282] Filming began in May 2021 in Atlanta and concluded that August.[283][284] Shazam! Fury of the Gods is scheduled to be released on March 17, 2023.[246]

The Flash (2023)

Main article: The Flash (film)

Andy Muschietti, the director of The Flash
Andy Muschietti, the director of The Flash

Barry Allen attempts to go back in time to prevent his mother's murder which brings unintentional consequences to his timeline.[285]

By July 2013, Greg Berlanti was developing a film that centered around Barry Allen / The Flash,[286] and drafted a script alongside Geoff Johns, Chris Brancato, Michael Green and Marc Guggenheim.[287] In October 2014, Warner Bros. announced The Flash with a scheduled 2018 release date, and that Ezra Miller had been cast in the starring role.[28][86] A new story treatment was being written by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller the following year in April.[288] Over the next two years, Seth Grahame-Smith and Rick Famuyiwa had individually dropped out as director due to creative differences with the studio.[289][290] Joby Harold was hired to do a page-one rewrite of the script in January 2017, which previously had drafts written by Grahame-Smith and Famuyiwa.[291] In July, the title for the film was changed to Flashpoint,[208] based on the comic book storyline.[292] Dan Mazeau was brought on as co-writer.[293] In March 2018, John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein were hired to co-direct.[294][295] In 2019, following creative differences with the co-directors' work on the script, Miller was hired to co-write a new draft in collaboration with Grant Morrison.[296] By July, Daley and Goldstein had left the project, while Andy Muschietti and Christina Hodson were hired to replace them as director and screenwriter, respectively. Barbara Muschietti and Michael Disco will serve as producers.[250] Filming began in April 2021,[297] at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden in Hertfordshire, England,[298] and wrapped that October.[299] The Flash is scheduled to be released on June 23, 2023.[243]

The Flash will explore the multiverse using the Speed Force and feature multiple superheroes,[300][301] including Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne / Batman (reprising his role from Batman and Batman Returns)[302][303] and Sasha Calle as Supergirl.[304] Ben Affleck also reprises his role as the DCEU version of Bruce Wayne / Batman.[303] The film will also "restart" the DCEU, according to Barbara Muschietti.[301] Michael Shannon and Antje Traue will reprise their roles as General Zod and Faora-Ul, respectively, from Man of Steel,[252] with Ron Livingston replacing Billy Crudup in the role of Henry Allen, Barry's father, who appeared in Justice League and its director's cut,[305] and Kiersey Clemons returning as Iris West from the latter cut.

Blue Beetle (2023)

Main article: Blue Beetle (film)

In November 2018, a film centered on the Jaime Reyes incarnation of Blue Beetle was in development, with a script written by Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer.[255] By February 2021, Angel Manuel Soto signed on as director,[254] and Xolo Maridueña was officially cast as the titular character in August.[256] John Rickard will serve as producer.[253] In March 2022, George Lopez, Adriana Barraza, Elpidia Carrillo, Damián Alcázar, and Belissa Escobedo joined the cast in supporting roles as members of the Reyes family: Uncle Rudy, Nana, Rocio, Alberto, and Milagro,[306] and both Raoul Max Trujillo and Susan Sarandon were cast as the film's villains, Carapax the Indestructible Man and Victoria Kord, respectively.[307][308] Additionally, Bruna Marquezine will play Jaime's girlfriend named Penny, while Harvey Guillén is cast in an unspecified supporting role.[309] Principal photography commenced in May in Atlanta, and wrapped on July 18 in Puerto Rico.[310][311] Initially developed as an HBO Max exclusive film,[312] Blue Beetle was later changed to a theatrical release, scheduled for August 18, 2023.[253]

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom (2023)

Main article: Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

In January 2019, Warner Bros. confirmed development of an Aquaman sequel, with intentions for James Wan to return as director.[313] In addition to starring, Jason Momoa has a larger creative role in the sequel; together with his writing partner Thomas Pa'a Sibbett,[314] he pitched their idea for the sequel to Warner Bros. and co-wrote the first story treatment.[315][316][317] In February, David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick signed on as screenwriter; he completed the script alongside Wan.[259][315] Producer Peter Safran has stated that the film will explore the other Seven Kingdoms of Atlantis.[318] Patrick Wilson and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II will reprise their roles as Orm Marius / Ocean Master and David Kane / Black Manta, respectively.[319][320] The title was announced as Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom.[321] Filming occurred from June 2021 to January 2022 in the United Kingdom, Hawaii and Los Angeles.[322][323] Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is scheduled to be released on December 25, 2023.[246]

Ben Affleck reprises his role as Bruce Wayne / Batman from previous DCEU films.

Future

In August 2022, CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery David Zaslav stated that the company has a 10-year plan of upcoming films, similar in approach to that of Marvel Studios with the MCU. The primary focus of the franchise going forward would be centered around Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman.[47] Warner Bros. Pictures and DC Films additionally have a variety of DC films in various stages of development.

Other potential films

Television series

SeriesSeasonEpisodesOriginally releasedShowrunnerStatus
First releasedLast released
Peacemaker18January 13, 2022 (2022-01-13)February 17, 2022 (2022-02-17)James Gunn[389]Released
2TBATBATBAIn development[389]

Peacemaker (2022–present)

Main article: Peacemaker (TV series)

Task Force X member Christopher Smith / Peacemaker is sent on a black-ops mission to target "butterflies", individuals possessed by parasitic, insect-like creatures invading the human race.[390]

By September 2020, a television series spin-off of The Suicide Squad (2021) centered on Peacemaker was in development for HBO Max. James Gunn served as an executive producer alongside Peter Safran, wrote its eight episodes and directed several of them.[48] The series stars John Cena, Steve Agee, and Jennifer Holland, who reprise their respective roles as Peacemaker, John Economos, and Emilia Harcourt from the film,[48][391][392] alongside Danielle Brooks as Leota Adebayo,[393] Robert Patrick as Auggie Smith / White Dragon,[392] and Freddie Stroma as Adrian Chase / Vigilante.[394] Filming began in Vancouver, Canada in January 2021 and concluded that July.[395][396] The first three episodes of Peacemaker were released on January 13, 2022, with subsequent episodes releasing weekly until February 17.[397] Soon after the series ended, the series was renewed for a second season, with Gunn set to write and direct every episode.[389]

Peacemaker is set five months after the events of The Suicide Squad.[398] Viola Davis,[399] Jason Momoa, and Ezra Miller reprise their respective roles as Amanda Waller, Arthur Curry / Aquaman, and Barry Allen / Flash from previous DCEU fims, with Superman and Wonder Woman also appearing portrayed by stand-ins. The series also mentions other heroes such as Batman and Green Arrow. In addition to the references of other DCEU heroes and villains, the series also contains various references to the wider DC universe, including confirmation that Bat-Mite, Doll Man, Matter-Eater Lad and Kite Man exist in the DCEU.[400][401][402][403] Additionally, a newspaper headline detailing the Intergang can be briefly seen, ahead of their debut in Black Adam.[404]

Other series in development

Canceled and reworked projects

It has been suggested that this article should be split into a new article titled List of unproduced DC Extended Universe projects. (discuss) (August 2022)

Over the years, many projects that were at one point supposed to be part of the DCEU have either been moved into a different continuity, outright canceled, or unreleased:

Expanded setting

Further information: List of DC Multiverse worlds

In October 2014, Geoff Johns explained that DC's approach to their films and television series would be different from Marvel Studios' cinematic universe, stating that their film universe and TV universes would be kept separate within a multiverse to allow "everyone to make the best possible product, to tell the best story, to do the best world".[521] This divide lasted until January 2020, when the DCEU was retroactively established to have connections to The CW's Arrowverse continuity via an expansion of the multiverse concept, during Part 4 of the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover. Ezra Miller reprised their role as Barry Allen in a cameo appearance alongside Grant Gustin's version of the same character. During their conversation, Miller's Barry Allen gets the idea to call himself "The Flash" from his alternate self and mentions "Victor".[522] Despite their cameo, the episode did not confirm the designated Earth for the DCEU characters.[523][524]

Miller's cameo opened up more possibilities for crossovers between DC films and the Arrowverse. President of DC Films, Walter Hamada, revealed that prior to "Crisis on Infinite Earths", DC had been structured in a way that the television division had to clear the use of characters with the film division. Now, the company could "really lean into this idea of [the multiverse] and acknowledge the fact there can be a Flash on TV and one in the movies, and you don't have to pick one or the other, and they both exist in this multiverse".[525] Arrowverse creator and executive producer Greg Berlanti agreed, feeling that "moving forward, there's more opportunity to do more things like this",[526] and was open to more film characters appearing in the Arrowverse.[525]

In August 2020, Hamada announced plans to develop a multiverse inspired by the comics. In doing so, the studio also stated that all past, present, and future projects are a part of the same unified multiverse.[440][303][49] Andy Muschietti, director of The Flash (2023), further explained that all previous adaptations of DC Comics are a part of the multiverse: "...all the cinematic iterations that we've seen before are valid...all that you've seen exists, and everything that you will see exists, in the same unified multiverse".[303][49]

Timeline

In the DCEU, the events of the films rarely explicitly make their exact years known.[527] Man of Steel takes place after the events of Wonder Woman and Wonder Woman 1984, which are set in 1918 and 1984, respectively. The events of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice occur 18 months after the events of Man of Steel, which follows the consequences and the emergence of aliens and metahumans such as Superman.[85] The film concludes with the death of Superman, which is emphasized in the following ensemble films, Suicide Squad and Justice League, taking place approximately one and two years later, respectively.[528]

Jason Momoa confirmed that Aquaman takes place right after Zack Snyder's Justice League.[162] Aquaman is followed by Shazam!, which occurs during the Christmas season of 2018.[529] Afterwards, the events of Birds of Prey are set in 2020,[188] followed by The Suicide Squad, confirmed to take place in 2021.[530] Peacemaker is set five months after the events of The Suicide Squad.

Recurring cast and characters

Further information: Characters of the DC Extended Universe and List of DC Extended Universe cast members

List indicator(s)

This section shows characters who will appear or have appeared in three or more franchises.

Character Film Television
Man of Steel Batman v Superman:
Dawn of Justice
Suicide Squad films Wonder Woman films Justice League films Aquaman films Shazam films Birds of Prey Black Adam The Flash Peacemaker
Barry Allen
The Flash
Ezra MillerC[86][100] Ezra Miller[116] Ezra Miller[250][g] Ezra MillerUG[532]
Arthur Curry
Aquaman
Jason MomoaC[73] Jason MomoaP[533] Jason Momoa[116] Jason Momoa[28][h] Jason MomoaUG[532]
Kal-El / Clark Kent
Superman
Henry Cavill[61][i] Henry Cavill[73] Henry Cavill[116] Ryan HadleyC[539] Brad Abramenko
C[540]
The Joker Jared Leto[94] Jared LetoE[139] John Goth
C[541]
Jared LetoA[542]
Jonathan Kent Kevin Costner[65] Kevin CostnerC[543] Kevin CostnerP[544]
Martha Kent Diane Lane[64][73] Diane Lane[116]
Lois Lane Amy Adams[62][73] Amy Adams[116]
Diana Prince
Wonder Woman
Gal Gadot[75] Gal Gadot[102][j] Gal Gadot[116] Kimberley von IlbergC[547]
Harleen Quinzel
Harley Quinn
Margot Robbie[94] Margot Robbie[548] Margot RobbieA
J'onn J'onzz / Calvin Swanwick
Martian Manhunter
[549]
Harry Lennix[550][551] Harry LennixE[138]
Amanda Waller Viola Davis[94] Viola Davis[275] Viola DavisC[552]
Bruce Wayne
Batman
Ben Affleck[74][k] Ben AffleckU[100] Ben Affleck[116][554] Ben Affleck[303]
Michael Keaton[l]
Matt TurnerEC[555]
General Zod Michael Shannon[63] Michael ShannonS[556] Michael Shannon[252]

Additional crew and production details

Title Crew/detail
Composer(s) Cinematographer Editor(s) Production companies Distributing company Running time
Man of Steel Hans Zimmer Amir Mokri David Brenner Warner Bros. Pictures,
Legendary Pictures,
DC Entertainment,
Syncopy Inc.
Warner Bros. Pictures 143 mins
Batman v Superman:
Dawn of Justice
Junkie XL & Hans Zimmer Larry Fong Warner Bros. Pictures,
RatPac-Dune Entertainment,
DC Entertainment,
Atlas Entertainment,
Cruel and Unusual Films
152 mins
Ultimate Edition:
182 mins
Suicide Squad Steven Price Roman Vasyanov John Gilroy Warner Bros. Pictures,
RatPac-Dune Entertainment,
DC Films,
Atlas Entertainment
123 mins
Extended Cut:
134 mins
Wonder Woman Rupert Gregson-Williams Matthew Jensen Martin Walsh Warner Bros. Pictures,
RatPac-Dune Entertainment,
DC Films,
Atlas Entertainment,
Cruel and Unusual Films,
Tencent Pictures,
Wanda Pictures
141 mins
Justice League Danny Elfman Jean-Philippe Gossart, Simon Firsht & Fabian Wagner[557][558] Martin Walsh, David Brenner & Richard Pearson Warner Bros. Pictures,
RatPac-Dune Entertainment,[m]
DC Films,
Atlas Entertainment,
Cruel and Unusual Films,
120 mins
Aquaman Rupert Gregson-Williams Don Burgess Kirk M. Morri Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Entertainment
Peter Safran Productions
143 mins
Shazam! Benjamin Wallfisch Maxime Alexandre Michel Aller New Line Cinema,
DC Films,
The Safran Company
132 mins
Birds of Prey Daniel Pemberton Matthew Libatique Jay Cassidy & Evan Schiff[560] Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films,
LuckyChap Entertainment,
Clubhouse Pictures,
Kroll & Co. Entertainment
109 mins
Wonder Woman 1984 Hans Zimmer Matthew Jensen Richard Pearson Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films,
Atlas Entertainment,
The Stone Quarry,[561]
151 mins
Zack Snyder's
Justice League
Tom Holkenborg Fabian Wagner David Brenner, Dody Dorn & Carlos M. Castillón[562] Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films,
The Stone Quarry,
Access Entertainment,
Atlas Entertainment
HBO Max,
Warner Bros. Pictures
242 mins
The Suicide Squad John Murphy Henry Braham Fred Raskin & Christian Wagner Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films,
Atlas Entertainment,
The Safran Company
Warner Bros. Pictures 132 mins
Peacemaker Clint Mansell & Kevin Kiner Michael Bonvillain and Sam McCurdy Fred Raskin, Todd Busch,
Greg D'Auria and Gregg Featherman
The Safran Company,
Troll Court Entertainment,
Warner Bros. Television,
HBO Max Original Series
HBO Max TBD
Black Adam Lorne Balfe Lawrence Sher[563] John Lee & Michael L. Sale New Line Cinema,
DC Films,
Seven Bucks Productions,
FlynnPictureCo.
Warner Bros. Pictures
Shazam! Fury of the Gods Christophe Beck Gyula Pados Michel Aller New Line Cinema,
DC Films,
The Safran Company
The Flash Benjamin Wallfisch[564] Henry Braham[565] Paul Machliss & Jason Ballantine Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films
The Disco Factory
Double Dream
Blue Beetle TBA Pawel Pogorzelski Craig Alpert Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films,
Wrigley Productions
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom Rupert Gregson-Williams Don Burgess TBA Warner Bros. Pictures,
DC Films,
The Safran Company,
Atomic Monster Productions

Reception

Box office performance

Each film is linked to the "Box office" section of its article.

Film U.S. release date Box office gross All-time ranking Budget Ref(s)
U.S. and Canada Other territories Worldwide U.S. and Canada Worldwide
Man of Steel June 14, 2013 $291,045,518 $377,000,000 $668,045,518 99 134 $225 million [566]
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice March 25, 2016 $330,360,194 $543,277,334 $873,637,528 67 71 $250 million [567]
Suicide Squad August 5, 2016 $325,100,054 $421,746,840 $746,846,894 70 109 $175 million [568]
Wonder Woman June 2, 2017 $412,845,172 $410,009,114 $822,854,286 31 83 $149 million [569]
Justice League November 17, 2017 $229,024,295 $428,902,692 $657,926,987 155 137 $300 million [570]
Aquaman December 21, 2018 $335,104,314 $813,424,079 $1,148,528,393 63 23 $200 million [571]
Shazam! April 5, 2019 $140,480,049 $225,600,000 $366,080,049 425 366 $100 million [572]
Birds of Prey February 7, 2020 $84,172,791 $121,150,150 $205,322,941 925 832 $85 million [573]
Wonder Woman 1984 December 25, 2020 $46,801,036 $122,800,970 $169,602,006 1,894 1,031 $200 million [574]
The Suicide Squad August 5, 2021 $55,817,425 $112,840,140 $168,657,565 1,793 1,233 $185 million [575]
Total $2,250,750,848 $3,576,751,319 $5,827,502,167 11 10 $1.87 billion [576][577]

Critical and public response

Each film and television series is linked to the "Critical response" section of its article.

Critical and public response of DC Extended Universe films
Title Critical Public
Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic CinemaScore PostTrak
Man of Steel 56% (340 reviews)[578] 55 (47 reviews)[579] A−[580]
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice 29% (436 reviews)[581] 44 (51 reviews)[582] B[583] 73%[583]
Suicide Squad 26% (390 reviews)[584] 40 (53 reviews)[585] B+[586] 73%[586]
Wonder Woman 93% (474 reviews)[587] 76 (50 reviews)[588] A[589] 82%[589]
Justice League 39% (408 reviews)[590] 45 (52 reviews)[591] B+[592] 85%[592]
Aquaman 65% (411 reviews)[593] 55 (50 reviews)[594] A–[595]
Shazam! 90% (415 reviews)[596] 71 (53 reviews)[597] A[598] 83%[599]
Birds of Prey 79% (432 reviews)[600] 60 (59 reviews)[601] B+[586]
Wonder Woman 1984 58% (440 reviews)[602] 60 (58 reviews)[603] B+[589] 78%[589]
Zack Snyder's Justice League 71% (305 reviews)[604] 54 (46 reviews)[605]
The Suicide Squad 90% (367 reviews)[606] 72 (55 reviews)[607] B+[586] 83%[586]

Additionally, Peacemaker has 94% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 86 reviews,[608] and a score of 70 on Metacritic, based on 26 reviews[609]

Accolades

Main article: List of accolades received by the DC Extended Universe

The franchise has won an Academy Award,[610] nominated for two Annie Awards,[611][612] seven Critics' Choice Movie Awards (winning two),[613][614][615][616] 10 Critics' Choice Super Awards (winning two),[617][618][619] 12 Golden Raspberry (winning four),[620][621] five Grammy Awards,[622] two Hugo Awards (winning one),[623][624] three Golden Reel Awards,[625][626][627] 14 MTV Movie & TV Awards (winning two),[628][629][630][631][632][633] one Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Award,[634] 29 Saturn Awards (winning one),[635][636][637][638][639] and seven Visual Effects Society Awards,[640][641][642] among others.

Music

Soundtracks

Title U.S. release date Length Label
Man of Steel: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack June 11, 2013 (2013-06-11)
  • 87:49
  • 118:18 (Deluxe Edition)[643]
WaterTower Music
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack March 18, 2016 (2016-03-18)
  • 71:35
  • 90:27 (Deluxe Edition)
Suicide Squad: The Album August 5, 2016 (2016-08-05)
  • 50:57
  • 60:49 (Collector Edition)
Atlantic
Suicide Squad: Original Motion Picture Score
  • 72:33
  • 93:38 (Digital Edition)
WaterTower Music
Wonder Woman: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack June 2, 2017 (2017-06-02) 78:38
Justice League: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack November 10, 2017 (2017-11-10) 101:22
Aquaman: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack December 21, 2018 (2018-12-21) 65:02
Shazam!: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack April 5, 2019 (2019-04-05) 73:13
Birds of Prey: The Album February 7, 2020 (2020-02-07) 42:52 Atlantic
Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) – Original Motion Picture Score February 14, 2020 (2020-02-14) 62:01 WaterTower Music
Wonder Woman 1984: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack December 16, 2020 (2020-12-16) 90:23
Wonder Woman 1984: Sketches from the Soundtrack February 5, 2021 (2021-02-05) 72:27
Zack Snyder's Justice League: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack March 18, 2021 (2021-03-18) 234:09
The Suicide Squad: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack August 6, 2021 (2021-08-06) 45:25
The Suicide Squad: Score from Original Motion Picture Soundtrack 50:58

Singles

Title U.S. release date Length Artist(s) Label Film
"Heathens" June 16, 2016 (2016-06-16) 3:15 Twenty One Pilots Atlantic Suicide Squad
"Sucker for Pain" June 24, 2016 (2016-06-24) 4:03 Lil Wayne, Wiz Khalifa, Imagine Dragons, Logic
and Ty Dolla Sign featuring X Ambassadors
"Purple Lamborghini" July 22, 2016 (2016-07-22) 3:35 Skrillex and Rick Ross
"Gangsta" August 1, 2016 (2016-08-01) 2:57 Kehlani
"To Be Human" May 25, 2017 (2017-05-25) 4:01 Sia featuring Labrinth WaterTower Music Wonder Woman
"Come Together" September 8, 2017 (2017-09-08) 3:13 Gary Clark Jr. and Junkie XL Justice League
"Everybody Knows" November 10, 2017 (2017-11-10) 4:26 Sigrid
"Everything I Need" December 14, 2018 (2018-12-14) 3:16 Skylar Grey Aquaman
"Diamonds" January 10, 2020 (2020-01-10) 3:19 Megan Thee Stallion and Normani Atlantic Birds of Prey
"Joke's On You" January 17, 2020 (2020-01-17) 3:04 Charlotte Lawrence
"Boss Bitch" January 24, 2020 (2020-01-24) 2:14 Doja Cat
"Sway With Me" January 31, 2020 (2020-01-31) 2:48 Saweetie and GALXARA
"Experiment On Me" February 7, 2020 (2020-02-07) 3:35 Halsey
"Sway With Me" (GALXARA Version) May 1, 2020 (2020-05-01) 2:33 GALXARA
"Rain" June 22, 2021 (2021-06-22) 3:56 Grandson and Jessie Reyez The Suicide Squad
"Oh No!!!" (The Suicide Squad Version) July 2, 2021 (2021-07-02) 3:33 Grandson, Vic Mensa and Masked Wolf

Other media

Animated miniseries

Aquaman: King of Atlantis is an American three-part animated miniseries produced by James Wan for the streaming service HBO Max, based on the DC Comics character Aquaman.[644] The series is produced by DC Entertainment, Warner Bros. Animation and Atomic Monster Productions. It is set after the events of Wan's 2018 DC Extended Universe (DCEU) film Aquaman,[645][646] but is not canonical to the DCEU.[647]

The miniseries began on October 14, 2021, and subsequent episodes were released on a weekly basis.[648] It also aired as a feature-length film on Cartoon Network on May 14, 2022;[649] the movie version was later released on DVD on June 21.[650][651] It was originally to air as part of the ACME Night block.

Novels

Title Publication date(s) Writer(s) Note
Man of Steel: The Early Years: Junior Novel April 30, 2013 Frank Whitman Tie-in children's book to Man of Steel[652]
Man of Steel: The Official Movie Novelization June 18, 2013 Greg Cox Novelization of the film[653]
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – Cross Fire February 16, 2016 Michael Kogge Tie-in prequel novel to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice[654]
Suicide Squad: The Official Movie Novelization August 5, 2016 Marv Wolfman Novelization of the film[655]
Wonder Woman: The Junior Novel May 30, 2017 Steve Korte[656]
Wonder Woman: The Official Movie Novelization June 6, 2017 Nancy Holder[657]
Aquaman: The Junior Novel November 6, 2018 Jim McCann[658]
Aquaman: Arthur's Guide to Atlantis November 6, 2018 Alexandra West Guide book[659]
Aquaman: Undertow November 6, 2018 Steve Behling Tie-in prequel novel to Aquaman[659]
Shazam!: The Junior Novel February 26, 2019 Calliope Glass Novelization of the film[660]
Shazam!: Freddy's Guide to Super Hero-ing February 26, 2019 Steve Behling Guide book[661]
Wonder Woman 1984: The Junior Novel July 7, 2020 Calliope Glass Novelization of the film[662]
Wonder Woman 1984: Truth, Love & Wonder July 7, 2020 Alexandra West Quotes book[663]

Comics

Title Issue(s) Publication date(s) Writer(s) Artist(s) Notes
Man of Steel – Prequel 1 May 18, 2013 Sterling Gates Jerry Ordway Promotional digital prequel comic from Walmart[664]
Batman v Superman:
Dawn of Justice
5 January 28, 2016 Christos Gage Joe Bennet Promotional digital prequel comics from Dr Pepper[665]
4 February 28, 2016 Jeff Parker, Christos Gage, Marguerite Bennett, and Joshua Williamson R. B. Silva, Federico Dallochio, Marcus To, and Eduardo Pansica Promotional prequel mini-comics that appeared in select General Mills cereal[666]
Batman v Superman:
Dawn of Justice – Upstairs/Downstairs
1 February 29, 2016 Christos Gage Joe Bennet Promotional prequel digital comic from Doritos and Walmart[667]
Suicide Squad: Suicide Blonde 1 June 2, 2016 Tony Bedard Tom Derenick, Juan Albarran, Hi-Fi, and Lori Jackson Promotional prequel comic from Splat Hair Dye[668]
Mercedes-Benz Presents:
Justice League
6 October 20 – November 15, 2017 Adam Schlagman Jason Badower Promotional digital comic from Mercedes-Benz[669]
Wonder Woman 1984:
Museum Mayhem
1 September 29, 2020 Anna Obropta, Louise Simonson, and Steve Pugh Bret Blevins and Marguerite Sauvage One-shot comic featuring a prequel story and a second story unrelated to the DCEU.[670]
Serving Up Justice 4 September 21, 2021 – January 27, 2022 Amanda Diebert Cat Staggs Promotional digital comic from DirecTV[671]
The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive 3 October 4, 2022 Kenny Porter Ricardo López Ortiz, Max Fiumara, Andy Muschietti, Juan Ferreyra, and Jason Howard Prelude comics to The Flash feature film.[672]

Video games

Title Release date(s) Publisher(s) Notes
Man of Steel June 14, 2013 Warner Bros. International Enterprises [673]
Kellogg's Man of Steel April 19, 2013 Catapult Marketing [674]
Batman vs Superman – Who Will Win? March 16, 2016 Warner Bros. International Enterprises Endless runner[675]
Suicide Squad: Special Ops July 19, 2016 First-person shooter[676]
Wonder Woman: Rise of the Warrior May 23, 2017 Endless runner[677]
Justice League VR: The Complete Experience December 5, 2017 Virtual reality[678]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ The Flash (2022) will retroactively incorporate Tim Burton's films Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992) into the DCEU's continuity via the plot elements of time travel and the multiverse, with Michael Keaton reprising his role as his version of the title character.
  2. ^ Snyder was the director during principal photography, but was replaced by Joss Whedon during post-production. Snyder retained directorial credit for the finished film,[51] though reports have indicated Whedon reshot a majority of the film. Consequently, Snyder released a director's cut in 2021.[52]
  3. ^ a b This release debuted concurrently in theaters and on HBO Max.[53][54]
  4. ^ The extended director's cut of Justice League (2017).
  5. ^ The release is an HBO Max-exclusive film.
  6. ^ The Writer's Guild of America West also credits individually: Rebecca Drysdale, Rick Famuyiwa, Seth Grahame-Smith, Geoff Johns, Phil Lord, Chris Miller, Ezra Miller, Grant Morrison, and Adam Sztykiel for writing additional literary materials although they will not be accredited on-screen.[251]
  7. ^ Barry Allen is portrayed at a younger age by Ian Loh.[531]
  8. ^ Arthur Curry is portrayed at different younger ages by Kekoa Kekumano,[534] Otis Dhanji,[535] and Kaan Guldur.[536]
  9. ^ Kal-El / Clark Kent is portrayed at different younger ages by Dylan Sprayberry and Cooper Timberline.[537][538]
  10. ^ Diana Prince is portrayed at different younger ages by Emily Carey and Lilly Aspel.[545][546]
  11. ^ Bruce Wayne is portrayed at a younger age by Brandon Spink.[553]
  12. ^ Keaton portrays an atlernate universe iteration of Wayne, reprising his role from Tim Burton's films Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992).
  13. ^ In home release, RatPac-Dune Entertainment was replaced with Access Entertainment (RatPac's current owner), following the rape and sexual harassment allegations against RatPac-Dune's CEO, Brett Ratner.[559]

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